As is our yearly tradition, it's time to make up a bunch of awards and hand them out to the most deserving and important people, places and things in the real estate, architecture and neighborhood universes of New York City! Yep, it's time for the Sixth Annual Curbed Awards!
Ugliest New Building Completed and Opened in 2009
God's Dorm (above), aka St. Ann's Church RIP, aka NYU, You've Done It Again.
Our Favorite Architectural Sell-Outs
Dude, can you believe they're using that Vampire Weekend song in a fucking commercial now? Or that those dudes at that hip architecture firm SHoP scored a commission from fucking Bruce Ratner to redesign his fucking Brooklyn basketball arena at the same time they're remaking the East River waterfront? It's like there's nothing pure anymore.
Scariest Moments at Thomas Mayne's New Cooper Union Building
3) Ominous thunderstorm threatens East Village, western civilization!
2) Local miscreants turn it into their own personal amusement park!
1) That Day All The Windows Opened At The Same Time.
Hot Karl of the Year
Besides Scarano, the man who best epitomized the boom years of New York City was, of course, Hot Karl Fischer. It is telling and, yes, absolutely fucking hilarious that his greatest legacy in 2009 proved to be a sandy spot of land in the middle of Williamsburg known around these parts as Hot Karl Beach.
Give Up the Goods Already!
Architectural renderings that we wish they'd just make public already. C'mon.
3) Extell's 70-story Hyatt set to rise at 157 West 57th Street.
2) The real design for Related's tower rising in the Hell's Kitchen swimming hole on 42nd Street.
1) Jean Nouvel's pavilion to hold the Walentas' carousel, Brooklyn Bridge Park.
The Robert Scarano Award
Awarded annually to Robert Scarano for achievements in the realm of architectural abomination. Even in the downturn, a year in which El Scarans bemoaned the fact that no one wants to hire him anymore, there was much success to celebrate. From the gala debut of the genius "mezzanine floor" concept at Carroll Gardens' Satori development to his parting gift to Park Slope to the craziest new building in Williamsburg, Scarano once again ruled the 718 in 2009. But it's for the microcosmic, above-street-level swimming hole at new Bowery development 52 East 4th Street (above) that he has once again proven himself truly worthy of the award named after him. And of our everlasting love.
Don't Make Nicolai Angry, People
3) SHoP rolls out a new design for the Brooklyn Nets stadium: "Still falls short of the high architectural standards... the larger project remains worrisome."
2) Jean Nouvel's midtown skyscraper downsized: "The notion of treating the Midtown skyline as a museum piece is more disturbing."
3) That time his Thai food was delivered cold: "I am most displeased with the quality exhibited by Pho Nard Thai Kitchen this evening. Fuckers."
The 2nd Annual Tribeca Total Craziness Trophy
One might be excused for thinking that the aluminum-clad building revealed in 2008 wouldn't be topped. At least until you've set your eyes on the Glass Atelier, built from bricks made of glass (above). Hey, you there! Hi!
Finger of the Year
In a year of downsized development dreams, far fewer fingers rose up from the streets of pleasantly low-rise neighborhoods. But in Williamsburg, the original Finger Building found itself back in the spotlight it never quite vacated, sporting a spiffy new name (The Albero!) and, after eons of stalled construction, pushing towards its final height of 14—not 16—floors. Finger fans and Billyburg development nostalgists, read on if you dare.
Building of the Year
The Standard. Runners-up: None close enough to bother mentioning.
Starchitect of the Year
Jean Nouvel. Because, as Wikipedia explains, "Brad Pitt (an architecture aficionado) and Angelina Jolie named their first-born child Shiloh Nouvel in homage to Jean Nouvel's work."